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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-21-2008, 02:42 PM Thread Starter
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Bird Rescue?

Hello PT, I come to you for some advice.

Earlier this morning I took my dog outside (backyard). Due to a lot of rain, I haven't cut the grass so it's pretty long right now. Anyway as Max (my 8 month old Jack Russel) was running around he came across a scared little bird that couldn't fly. The bird just quickly hopped and used the tall grass for cover. He made his way to the garden in the back and tried to hide. Max of course was able to sniff him out which is good because I wanted to get a hold of him before the cats did.


We have a cat problem here and a lot of people from the neighborhood let their cats out and roam free. What's worse is that my next door neighbor has taken on feeding these cats because "her grand children like the cats". So they're in my back yard a lot and I have a lot of trees in my backyard and my other next door neighbor has bird feeders, so you can see the conflict here.

Yesterday my cat (which is a house cat, I don't let her out unless I'm in the back yard with her) was sitting in my window because a group of about 20 birds made their stop in my back yard. It was a nice sight seeing them all sitting on different levels of the pine tree back there. Of course I was worried about the cats but I didn't think much about it at the time.

Well I'm assuming this is a bird from that pack, but I honestly don't know if it was a cat that got to the bird. Do birds fight one another? The damage to one of it's wings seems bad but at the same time not so bad. I can see bones of the wing, but only a small gash, no blood.

Anyway I called the Humane Society here in my city but they weren't much help. I knew that was going to be the case though. The first woman I spoke to said to put the bird in tall grass and/or bring the bird to a park and find tall grass. Good advice, but if Max could find the bird so easily, so could a cat. Yes, such is life and such is nature but perhaps I can help the bird heal and stand a chance? I called them back and told them about the wing damage and they said that they could come pick the bird up. I asked what would happen and she said depending on the damage that they would try and find someone to look after it, and if they couldn't they would probably have to put the bird to sleep. I told them not to come, that I'd take care of the bird.

So yeah, this is where I am now. Looking after a bird and no clue how to do it. I collected some worms and water for the bird and put her in a nice pet carrier with a blanket. I set her up in the car port and I'm hoping to just look after her each day and hope for signs of healing. So any advice from PT would be welcomed.

I don't even know what kind of bird it is, but she's very cute. She has also become less afraid of me, like shes warming up to me. Like she knows I'm not going to hurt her, and that's so cool. I made a friend.

Anyway here are some images. Thanks for reading! Any info or links to a site with more info. Anything.

Oh, just before submitting this thread I went and checked on her. I put a dish of water in plus about 4 worms and she ate them. That's a good thing, but how much worms per-day should she be eating? And should I be adding just worms or other bugs/food?

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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-21-2008, 05:40 PM
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wow! Well, to start, thank you for looking after it Yes it does eat bugs, you can tell by it's beak, long and pointed to stab worms out of the ground and bugs out of holes. I'm not sure this applies to all birds, but they have an organ called a gizzard. I believe it generally has some sand/gravel in it? Something about helping to digest food....it was so long ago when I was taught this. Maybe put some sand/small gravel in with the grass, just like...dirt or something. Someone verify this...? Also, where do you live? That can help us identify the bird. Certain birds are indigenous to certain regions. You have her set up nicely. Maybe throw in a branch, I think that's how they keep the beak sharp? Best wishes!!

"If you can't change your fate, change your attitude." - Amy Tan
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-21-2008, 06:33 PM Thread Starter
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Hey Mulder, thanks for the reply.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mulder View Post
Also, where do you live? That can help us identify the bird. Certain birds are indigenous to certain regions. You have her set up nicely. Maybe throw in a branch, I think that's how they keep the beak sharp? Best wishes!!
I think she's a Straling. I live in Ontario, Canada. I found an actual Starling website that has some pictures up and that's how I came to the conclusion: http://www.starlingtalk.com/MyAlbum/album1.htm

I ended up taking out the white blanket because she was pooping all over it and it was wet and it would have been harder to keep cleaning. So I took her back out and then cleaned it and replaced the blanket with leaves and some twigs. I think that might make her feel more at home. She's quite calm now too and I read that Starlings remember other birds and people by their sounds and I'm finding that's the same case here. It's just hard to pick her up without touching her damaged wing.

Speaking of that, I tried to take a picture and show the damage but I didn't get a clean shot. I don't want to take her out again because I'm sure it hurts and I'm sure she's scared, so tomorrow when I go to clean up and replace the leaves/twigs I'll snap a better photo.

Also, I'm wearing some gloves when I handle the bird, and I'm making sure to wash up, but should I be worried about diseases or anything? I mean I know next to nothing about wild birds so I just want to make sure that I'm not risking my health or my other pet's health.

Thanks again for the info.

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-21-2008, 09:15 PM
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i think most bird diseases are bird only like mites and things, just make sure to wash before and after

you could take her to the vet and see if they can clean up her wing and see what damage is done to it

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-21-2008, 09:32 PM
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She doesn't look like a fledgling. And I'm assuming she has an injured wing from the posts?Try keeping here dry and warm,so try drying off the leaves and branches a bit.

Here are some rescues you may be able to contact for help
Wild Bird Care Center
List of Bird Rescues

Hope this helps,and keep us updated





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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-22-2008, 08:10 AM Thread Starter
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Hey guys, thanks for the replies.

I ended up also posting this information on http://www.starlingtalk.com/ (on their message boards). They have some Starling professionals so I posted over there and I found out somethings.

It turns out that cats carry a bacteria that is fatal to birds should it be carried over from a cat. It can be carried over via a bite or a scratch and if it isn't treated with the proper anti-biotic in a limited amount of time then it can become fatal and kill the bird. The bacteria is called: Pasteurella multocida.

Unfortunately I didn't learn of this until it was too late and the veterinarian center was closed. I treated the bird with some regular off the counter anti-biotics but it wasn't enough, or it was too little too late.

The Starling died this morning about two hours ago. I heard her flapping her wings and I assumed she was just getting up and having a bath so I went back to sleep. About and hour later when I got up I noticed she was face up in her water dish, not moving. I can only assuming that it was the lack of proper treatment that lead to her death.

Thanks for all the information provided in this thread. I'm sorry I couldn't do more for the bird, but I was limited by time and knowledge.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-22-2008, 10:15 AM
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Oh sorry for your loss.Yeah cats bits are fatal to birds and small animals that the catch.Unfortunately the clinics and what not are closed,or you just don't figure it out in time.





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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 07-22-2008, 11:08 PM
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awww I'm sorry, you did what you could *hugs*

"If you can't change your fate, change your attitude." - Amy Tan
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